Category Archives: DIY Projects

Oh how I love to do things myself. Here are some of the projects I’ve been working on lately around the house.

We got a new dishwasher, and we installed it ourselves!

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On Saturday my husband and I installed a new dishwasher! Our “old” dishwasher (5 years and 5 months is not “old” in my opinion…arg) started making a horrible noise. I searched online for possible solutions to making the noise go away and the only answers I found were to replace the motor. After calling the manufacturer (Whirlpool – I won’t ever buy another dishwasher (or possibly any appliance) made by them again) to find out how much a new motor would cost ($181 + $20 shipping) I decided it really wasn’t worth it. Not only would I have to purchase the part, but I’d also need someone to come out and install it. In the end I could probably buy a new dishwasher for the same amount of money to fix the old one, and it wouldn’t have a warranty.

So, we decided to get a new dishwasher. I shopped around a little bit and ended up getting a Samsung. Turns out many of the other leading dishwasher brands are made by Whirlpool, which I vowed not to ever purchase again. So the Samsung was the winner, and to save some money (about $120), I thought we could install it ourselves. I did a few “how to install a dishwasher” searches on google and found some helpful videos that lead me to believe it wouldn’t be that difficult to install. And the videos were right, it wasn’t to bad….

It took us about 4 hours to complete the installation project.
Here’s how we did it:

ask father-in-law to bring over dolly
use dolly to transport new dishwasher from garage to kitchen
open box and inspect dishwasher
(watch father-in-law make a ‘house’ with window for sweet pea – she loves it!!)
turn water off
turn off electricity
uninstall old dishwasher
(say goodbye to father-in-law and thank him for his help)
(clean under sink – ick)

read install manual for new dishwasher
(put sweet pea down for a nap)
(eat lunch)
attach all the loose pieces of dishwasher kit that we purchased (items that the dishwasher doesn’t come with, like the plumbing parts and electrical cord)
remove electrical box cover
(call father for electrical help. We took the cord off the old dishwasher, but it didn’t have color coded wires (which is odd) so he told us to use an extension cord)
cut an extension cord in half and splice cord to expose internal wires (black, white, green)
line up and tape electrical wire and water line to floor to match the channels on the base of new dishwasher
slide dishwasher under counter
dishwasher doesn’t fit under counter, it’s about 1/8th” to tall
Remove plastic leveling feet from base of dishwasher and slide enough cardboard (from box dishwasher came in) under the sides of the dishwasher to level it
level dishwasher
mount to counter
attached water line
wire electrical (green to green, black to black, white to white)
put electrical box cover back on
turn water and electricity back on
cross fingers that everything works – it does…and presto, we have a new dishwasher!
load dishwasher, turn on and check for leaks
no leaks, yay!
and last, but not least: clean house…styrofoam and cardboard everywhere!

And that’s how a husband and wife team up to get the job done on a Saturday afternoon.
Thanks hubby, you’re the best!!

Laundry room shelving installed, caulked, primed and painted. Project complete!

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While my parents were here last weekend I had them help me with my laundry room shelving project. Before they arrived I measured the space to determine exactly what materials I’d need to make the shelves. Once all measurements were complied I took my little scratch pad of notes and headed to Lowe’s (I like Lowe’s, they are good people, never a bad experience). After picking out the lumber I had them cut it all for me – awesome! It did take some time, but the guy was being very exact with all his measurements, making sure the saw blade didn’t cut off too much at the ends. It all turned out perfect! I primed all the wood before my parents arrived so that it was done before we installed the shelving.

Saturday morning the project began…but we didn’t finish until mid afternoon that day. With a little toddler running around excited to have her Meme and Papa at her house there were some obvious set backs – I mean how can you resist tea time with a sweet little angel??!! :) Needless to say, we finished the shelves, and Meme painted the inside of the exterior door to match the trim!! Woohoo! Very exciting stuff to me!

A few pictures of the project in progress to its completion:
The finished pictures are taken in the evening, so they’ve got an orange-ish hue. Look at the earlier pictures to get a better idea of the colors.

List of all the materials and tools we used:
1×4’s for the support boards (under the shelves)
1×2’s for the front facing of the shelves (keeps the shelves from bending and gives them a nice look)
23/32 (or 5/8th’s inch) plywood for the shelves
2 1/2″ wood screws
2″ finishing nails
Stud Finder
Tape Measure
Electric Drill (screwdriver bit, and drill bit)
Level
Circular Saw
Hand Saw
Triangle Ruler
Latex Caulk (paintable)
Sand Paper
Finishing Putty
Primer Paint
Colored Paint
Paint Brush
Paint Roller
Paint Tray and Liners
Painters Tape

Painting Project Complete!

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The laundry room and bathroom paint job is complete – hooray! It’s so much nicer to have a bright and fresh space to walk into every day. I love it. I’m going to wait to post new pictures until late October. Reason: Mom and Dad are coming to visit mid October and we’re going to install some new shelves in the laundry room, we’ve got to paint the door still, I’m going to blow up some beach pictures of my little sweet pea to hang on the wall, I’ve got to get a new shower curtain and rug, and I’d love to get some new towels. All of things will make the space look dramatically different and beautiful (at least they will in my head). So, with that said, check back in a month for a new update on our evolving laundry and bathroom space.

Repainting the Laundry room and Bathroom

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When my husband and I built our home I picked out most of the paint colors. I chose several earthy tones and picked out a few that were on the darker end of the spectrum…such as the orange color pictured below in our bathroom and laundry room downstairs. I really like the paint color, but I’m ready for a change! The orange is very limiting when it comes to decorating (it’s orange, you either go white, black, brown or maybe green) and I really want it to be a fresh area, so we’re repainting the walls. We’ve decided to paint the walls a very neutral beige color…yes, we’re making it boring, but it will be very versatile and easy to update with some simple redecorating.

In the beginning:

As you can see below, we’ve started the project and area ALMOST finished!! Yay! Since I’m seven months pregnant my husband is doing all the painting…he insisted, so sure, I’ll let him :) he’s really the best! Hopefully the painting will be complete tomorrow.

Where we are now:
Laundry room walls are done. Bathroom walls are almost done.

After the walls are painted I’m going to install new shelving in the laundry room above the washer and dryer. The shelving will be painted the same color as our trim. I’ll also be painting the inside of the exterior door, which you can see has never been painted even though we’ve been living here 5 years (what can I say, some things just aren’t a priority), it too will be the same color as the trim.

Exciting times here at the house!